Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
349

Martial Solal: NY1: Live at the Village Vanguard

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count Views
Martial Solal: NY1:  Live at the Village Vanguard I hadn't heard of the Algiers-born, Paris-based pianist Martial Solal, and my review copy of this disc came in a bare bones state: just a cardboard sleeve, a listing of the tunes and musicians. No cover art, no liner notes.

A blind listen told me "Modernistic," a young lion full of the creative drive and fire.

Then I read more.

Martial Solal is 74 years old, having played with Sidney Bechet and recorded with Django Reinhart and Lee Konitz, among others. He has been recording for the French Dreyfus label of late. NY1: Live at the Village Vanguard was recorded a week after 9/11, and the disc opens with the Solal-penned "NY1," the name of the New York news channel in which the pianist was immersed prior to these performances. The song is edgy, stop-start, tempo-shifting... a great lead-in to the rest of the set.

Four of the tunes on the disc are originals—odd, angular, almost Cecil Taylorish compositions, anchored by Bill Stewart's shuffling drum work and Francois Moutin's solid bass lines. But the set alternates classics with the originals, creating an effective listening balance. "What Is This Thing Called Love?" rambles for fourteen facinating minutes, Solal and company exploring every permutation of the melody, every nook and cranny. "Body and Soul" and "Softly as in a Morning Sunrise" are rendered in like fashion; these extended takes— beautifully off-kilter renditions of familiar classics alternating with the pianist's edgy originals—make the package.

For a piano trio to work, all the parts have to fit together like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle: song selection and order, judicious and empathic support, the piano man out front prancing along that line between freedom and constraint—here leaning toward the freedom side. That's exactly what happens on NY1: Live at the Village Vanguard.

Visit Blue Note Records on the web.


Track Listing: NY-1; What Is This Thing Called Love; Suspect Rhythm; Body and Soul; Zig Zag; Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise; Lombardy.

Personnel: Martial Solal: piano; Bill Stewart: drums; Francois Moutin: bass.

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Blue Note Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Profiles
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
[no cover]
À Bout De Souffle
Dreyfus Jazz
2012
buy
Live at the Village Vanguard: I Can't Give You Anything But Love
Live at the Village...
CAM Jazz
2010
buy
Live at the Village Vanguard: I Can't Give You Anything But Love
Live at the Village...
CAM Jazz
2009
buy
[no cover]
Live At The Village...
Dreyfus Jazz
2008
buy
Longitude
Longitude
CAM Jazz
2008
buy
[no cover]
Rue De Seine
Dreyfus Jazz
2006
buy

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.